The spokesman for the Thai CCSA, or Center for Covid-19 Situation Administration, confirmed this afternoon to the Thai media that the CCSA was planning to evaluate the past several weeks of Covid-19 related measures, especially around “deep red” zones, in the country.
Dr. Taweesin Visanuyothin, the spokesperson for the Covid-19 center, made the announcement early this afternoon when a reporter for the associated press asked about the restrictions and measures.
Currently, Thailand divides provinces into zones based on risk and Covid-19 cases, with six areas/provinces currently “deep red” which includes Bangkok, Chonburi, Chiang Mai among others. Other provinces are either orange or red based on infections and cases. Some provinces have not had any cases in weeks, whereas others like Bangkok remain the epicenter of the current round of Covid-19. Most of the dark red provinces have remained roughly the same in terms of cases (or risen like Bangkok) but some, including Chiang Mai and Chonburi, have dropped.
Measures in place for deep red zones include a ban on dine-in, gyms, and early closing times/take-away times for grocery stores and convenience stores. Entertainment venues are currently closed nationwide regardless of zone color. Many provinces have adopted provincial rules that strengthen the national restrictions, notably Phuket and Surat Thani where even social gatherings of as small as two outside of a direct household are banned, regardless of color-coding. The Pattaya News notes that even if the CCSA downgrades Chonburi to allow dine-in, the final decision would be with the Governor who could strengthen restrictions if they wish.
Dr. Taweesin stated to the press that any new measures would be announced at the daily Covid-19 briefing scheduled for tomorrow, May 14th. This comes as some prominent doctors in Thailand, including advisors to the CCSA, are pushing for tougher restrictions in some areas, especially Bangkok, where the majority of daily Covid-19 cases in the country are coming from. Meanwhile, in places like Chiang Mai that have seen a reduction in cases, restaurant associations, and even the Governor have pleaded with the CCSA to consider reducing them from deep-red status and allow dine-in at restaurants or risk putting tens of thousands of jobs at risk.
We will update our readers as soon as announcements are released, but remind them that any statements from the CCSA would also need to await a Governor’s order for regional measures.